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Monday August 6, 2012 Riggs added weight over summer thanks to new weightlifting program and a new dog

Updated: 12:30pm, August 6

Junior cornerback Cody Riggs is listed at 5-foot-9, 180 pounds in this year’s media guide.

Cody Riggs

Riggs quickly provides an update on his measurables when you ask how his summer went. He wants to make sure everyone knows that he wasn't lying on the beach all summer.

“I’m up to 190 pounds,’’ Riggs said. “That’s something that has changed for me. I was 175 pounds last year.”

The increase in weight is a confluence of a couple of factors for Riggs, most notably a summer spent in the weight room under the direction of new strength-and-conditioning coordinator Jeff Dillman. Riggs worked out more than he ever has to add muscle and strength.

Focus was not a problem.

“I didn’t go home not one time,’’ said Riggs, who played at St. Thomas Aquinas in Fort Lauderdale. “I stayed up here the whole summer.”

Riggs started 10 games as a sophomore and is focused on remaining a starter. He knows that with a roster loaded with talented defensive backs, the competition for playing time is expected to be fierce in fall camp. The quest to be at his best kept him in town all summer. So what else did?

Well, Riggs became an official pet owner, meaning regular trips back and forth from Gainesville to Fort Lauderdale didn’t happen. Riggs now is an owner of a blue pitbull that keeps him busy once he gets home from school and football practice.

“That’s what made me stay up here,’’ he said. “I stayed and worked out. I got a lot better this offseason.”

Riggs said he believes the Gators have, too. Riggs has started 13 games over the past two seasons, but a 15-11 record over that span is not what Riggs expected when he signed with the Gators in 2010.

He hopes the Gators’ record moves in the same direction as his weight over the summer: up.

“We want to get respect in the SEC,’’ Riggs said. “When I came to Florida, Florida was the top school in the SEC. We want it to be back to where it was.”

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